Opinion: ‘We need to pick up the pace’ of the rebuild


 Nicky Wagner is Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration

It’s a very exciting and important few weeks for me as I take over the reigns as Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration.

I was born and raised in Christchurch. This city is my home and the reason I got into politics – I want to ensure Christchurch is a great place to live for my family, friends and community. The last six years have been tough for us all. Everyone lost something – a family member, a friend, a home, a community, a lifestyle.

Many have been injured, physically or emotionally, and we’ve all been stretched, sometimes almost to breaking point. But we’ve also supported one another through the initial disaster, the recovery, the rebuild and now, the regeneration phase.

And we need to continue supporting individuals, organisations and communities still working through earthquake issues.

Although we still have plenty to do, I want to start my tenure with a reflection on how far we’ve actually come. There is so much to acknowledge and celebrate, and I’m very proud to be part of this community and its progress.

Right now, Christchurch is a city of real opportunity. I think we all want the same thing – a vibrant, people-friendly city where our families can thrive. We want a great education for our kids, we want training and higher learner opportunities, we want jobs we like, we want support services, solid infrastructure and a safe place to relax and enjoy ourselves.

And we can do it. I’ll be working hard alongside Mayor Lianne Dalziel, the city council, Regenerate Christchurch, Otakaro, other agencies and community groups and, most importantly, you. By working together we can create something really special.

I know there’s still a lot of work to be done. We need to pick up the pace and stay focussed on moving in the right direction. The ultimate test for everything we do needs to be: Is this good for Christchurch?

If every decision, plan or project can pass that test, then we’ll be safe in the knowledge that our city will be good for us and for many generations to come.